The only novel by Orson Welles, a witty, madcap, pulp-noir adventure of international intrigue, blackmail, and murder
The mysterious Mr. Arkadin claims he cannot remember anything of his life prior to the moment in 1927 when he found himself alone in Zurich with two hundred thousand Swiss francs in his pocket, a sum with which he subsequently built a vast fortune. Now a fabulously wealthy and influential financier, he enlists the services of one Van Stratten, a small-time smuggler and racketeer, charging him with the task of investigating Arkadin’s forgotten past. Traveling across the world—and through the seedy underworld of postwar Europe—Van Stratten begins piecing together information for his confidential report. But for some unknown and sinisterly suspicious reason, everyone he speaks to soon turns up dead.
The work of an acknowledged genius of the stage and cinema, Mr. Arkadin: Aka Confidential Report is the basis for the controversial motion picture written, directed by, and starring Welles himself—the movie the great auteur bemoaned as “the most butchered film of my career.” Welles’s hauntingly strange and exhilarating novel remains an enigmatic expression of his intentions and an enduring example of his storytelling brilliance.
A witty, madcap, pulp-noir adventure of international intrigue, blackmail, and murder from the legendary director, actor, and writer Orson Welles. With a new introduction on its mysterious creation and tangled history by John Baxter, and available just in time for two Wellesian movie moments: the 55th anniversary of Mr. Arkadin’s first release; and Richard Linklater’s Me and Orson Welles, starring Zac Efron, Claire Danes, and Christian McKay.